Should Christians carry guns?
Christians carrying firearms has long been the subject of controversy. Some religious leaders are of the view that nothing is wrong with such a practice, whereas others contend that it is against scripture.
The majority who oppose reference II Corinthians 10 verse 4-5, "For the weapon of our warfare is not carnal, but mighty through God to pulling down strongholds; Casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalted itself against the knowledge of God."
Counsellor in charge of the Jamaica Kingston mission, attached to the Portmore Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints (Mormon) Rev. Mark Deans, said his church does not support members carrying guns within the confines of the church. However, he was quick to point out that individual members will have to respond to their personal revelation from God on how best to deal with such matters.
"Even though the Church is guided by revelation from God on the issue, we also know that all members received, whereas their personal revelation, but whatever they do must conform with the law of the land," Deans told Family and Religion.
"The greatest weapon we can have is faith in our heavenly Father, through the Holy Spirit, however, a man has the right to defend himself and his family."
According to Rev Deans, Christians should not look to the gun as a means of protection because faith in God and a reliance on the Holy Spirit should form the basis of one's protection.
"I firmly believe that our first point of defence is relying on God , having faith in His Son, Jesus Christ," he noted.
"On the other hand, a man has the right to defend himself and his family. In my case, I pray to the heavenly Father to protect my family on a daily basis," Rev. Deans added.
He said even though it is within the Christian's right to carry his weapon, as long as there is adherence to the legal requirements, he has to be mindful of the destructive nature of a gun.
"The gun is a weapon with one function, that is to destroy humans, so,
knowing its function this precludes me from carrying one."
"No matter what the circumstance is, Christians are not required to take
anybody's life, so when a Christian acquires a gun to protect his family, he is going down a slippery road. Remember, if you live by the gun you will die by it."
Rev. Deans said missionaries at his church are only required to arm
themselves with the word of the Lord when they go out in communities to
minister to the people.
"They are taught to live by faith, that's what the church advocates, lining up with the scriptures," the Mormon pastor said.